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Chicken-Fried News: Education cheer

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It’s easy to root for education, which has achieved underdog status at the Oklahoma Capitol.

Education leaders and teachers are always fighting well-connected almighty Oklahoma lawmakers, some of whom even carry American Legislative Exchange Council legislation in their briefcases.

We hear teachers at the state Capitol asking for more pay, demanding more classroom funding and hoping for support. Those classroom stories steal the hearts of those of us at Chicken-Fried News.

First, let’s think about those lesson plans. Over the past five years, teachers have taken a ride on the curriculum roller coaster by teaching PASS standards and then Common Core, back to PASS and now Oklahoma academic standards.

With shrinking school budgets, districts are moving to four-day school weeks, which hurts students who rely on the cafeteria for a daily meal. Teacher aid positions also were eliminated in many districts. That translates to 30 students in a single first-grade classroom with one teacher who might be emergency certified.

Come on, public ed! Let’s fight! Let’s win!

When we caught the evening news March 23, we booed.

KOCO.com visited Classen School of Advanced Studies hours after Oklahoma City Public Schools officials announced 208 teaching positions would be cut in the coming school year. The cut helps shore up the dwindling budget, plugging $8 million into the estimated $30 million hole.

Parents were upset. We were upset.

This is all a direct result of the statewide revenue shortfall.

This ain’t just a teacher fight no more.

Print headline: Education cheer

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